Health

The fourth installment of Shelterforce's Health and Community Development supplement.The health of individuals and the health of communities are linked in so many ways, from zoning to access to fresh food, safe housing, safe streets and parks, and proper medical care. How is this growing realization affecting practice for both community development organizations and health care organizations? What does it take for these two separate worlds to partner toward shared goals? Thanks to the Kresge and Robert Wood Johnson foundations, and Kaiser Permanente for supporting our health and communities coverage, and to our Health and Community Development Editorial Advisory Board for their guidance, knowledge, and insights. Click here to view and download a PDF of our health supplements.

How Affordable Housers Perpetuate Past Harms, and How They Can Do Better

Some elements of affordable housing—from the development process to the way buildings are managed—are rooted in racist assumptions that dehumanize residents. Here are some simple ways you can be a better housing provider.
Young female volunteer in mask gives an elderly man boxes with food near his house. Quarantined, isolated.

Blame Policies, Not Places, for Poor Health

Shifting blame from people to ZIP codes is not enough to create healthy communities. Here’s how to do better.
Residents at Lincoln Place gather and socialize outdoors.

The Journey Into Supportive Housing

Venturing into supportive housing can be a daunting task for housing providers. The Vancouver Housing Authority shares the insight they’ve gained over the years through doubling their supportive housing units.

Trauma-Informed Practices Help Deliver Better Care to Clients and Staff

Poverty, violence, and racism can fuel toxic stress. It's critical that organizations respond with trauma-informed care. Here's how.

A Homeownership Program that Takes Health into Account

A 10-city initiative to boost homeownership also aims to align required fair housing and health needs assessments. Can it be done?

Breathing in Glass: Citing Health Concerns, NY Housing Authority to Ask HUD to Close...

A public housing authority in Cohoes, New York, is trying to shut down its own buildings—since it can’t shut down the factory that is making them unlivable.

Housing Organizations Pivot to Provide COVID Testing and Vaccinations

Some CDCs hope that building trust can save lives now while building a stronger foundation for long-term health. “COVID is a catalyst forcing us to think outside the box, to pivot, to explore our partnerships in different ways.”

Getting Competitive Health Care Systems to Work Together For the Community

Although they were serving the same communities, Philadelphia’s nonprofit hospitals weren’t coordinating with each other. A yearslong process aimed to change that. How did the hospitals eventually come together and what lessons can be drawn to inform hospital collaborations elsewhere?

What’s Different When the Community Collects the Data?

When residents were recruited to conduct an annual study that examines community change and health in nine Massachusetts communities, they didn't just collect data—they changed how and what was collected.

Filling the Affordable Housing Financing Gap in the Gulf Coast Region

A new approach to pooling financing? Gulf Coast Housing Partnership’s initiative combines LIHTC credits and low-interest loans from national Medicaid managed care organizations for projects that blend affordable housing and onsite health centers.

Rural Health Professionals Think Outside the Hospital

Could rural hospitals build on existing social services work by investing their assets to advance their communities' health? Examples from Kansas, Vermont, Wisconsin, and Virginia show some possibilities.

Housing Design That Advances Health

Applying trauma-informed principles, reducing social isolation, and encouraging active living—how housing can be designed to promote good health.

Insights for Health and Community Development Partnerships from People Who Have Crossed Sectors

Increasingly, health practitioners are being hired by community development organizations, and vice versa. What can they tell us about how differently the sectors operate and perceive issues, and where there’s potential for partnership?

Community Fridges Provide Vital and Visible Relief in the War on Hunger

While understandably and undeniably inefficient compared to larger-scale interventions, community fridges are new approach to a persistent problem may have broader implications for the ways we deliver services and how we envision our role in the community.

Health Care Institutions Invest in Tenant Protections for Community Health

Health care institutions are expanding from funding development to supporting housing justice and tenant rights policy.

Did America Vote to Tackle Race and Health Inequities?

The ushering in of a new administration is a good time to reflect on some key 2020 ballot measures that have either advanced or hurt racial and health equity.
A map displaying the boundary of a neighborhood, with several green markers within the boundary and many other green markers outside of it.

Let’s Re-Place the Health Opportunity Maps

The way we map health opportunity has serious flaws. How can we make those maps more reflective of communities' lived experiences?

A Bolder Future for Housing Justice: ‘These Times Call for Radical Actions’

Housing advocates working at the local, state, and national levels discuss new research and policy recommendations for advancing housing justice.

Health Care Institutions Must Acknowledge Their Role in Neighborhood Change

If those in health care seek to develop new ways to help patients stay in their homes, they must also find ways to temper how they affect communities in which they reside.
evictions: image of house keys and a tag that says "evicted"

Top 10 Shelterforce Articles of 2020

Eviction, tiny houses, hotel rooms for the homeless, and COVID-19—Shelterforce's 10 most-read articles of 2020.